The ability to balance empathy and analytical thinking is a huge advantage.
In other words, to be a true competitor, you also need to be truly empathetic. Although empathy—the ability to understand and share the feelings of others—has long been considered important for medical providers, therapists and teachers, more and more research shows cultivating empathy is key for more competitive pursuits, too.
“Even as we fight wars, it is wise to keep an eye on the peace that will follow,” says Anthony Jack, Ph.D., who studies empathy as the principal investigator at the Brain, Mind and Consciousness Lab at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. “That takes true empathy… putting yourself in the shoes of the competitor.”